There are so many different mask options and iterations on the market, it can be hard to tell which is most effective. Recent research ranked different types of masks. But now there’s another test you can do yourself to see how effective your own mask is.

NBC Investigative correspondent Vicky Nguyen discussed a new test that might help determine if your mask is effective. It’s called the candle test. “Scientists say you can check to see how effective your mask or face covering is with a simple trick. Just light a candle and see if you can blow it out while wearing a face covering,” Nguyen said.

In a test, Nguyen couldn’t blow out the candle with a two-layered cloth mask or a disposable surgical mask. A gaiter with a single layer of fabric didn’t provide enough coverage, she could blow out the candle through that type of mask.

See the video, below:

Source: Today TV/Youtube

Dr. Amesh A. Adalja, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in Baltimore and an infectious disease physician, told TODAY that the test is valuable, ” It has biological plausibility. It is one way to measure permeability. It’s not iron-clad, it’s not the same thing as working in a cough simulator in a lab, but it is one indication of the permeability of the mask you’re wearing to the air that’s expelled from your breath and from your nose.”

Health officials, including Dr. Robert Redfield, the director of the Centers for Disease Control, recommend that all Americans wear masks to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. “Cloth face coverings are one of the most powerful weapons we have to slow and stop the spread of the virus — particularly when used universally within a community setting,” Dr. Robert Redfield, the director of the CDC, said in a statement last month. “All Americans have a responsibility to protect themselves, their families and their communities.”

Read more about protecting yourself from coronavirus. Check the CDC website for more information on how to protect yourself and check our latest article to learn how COVID-19 differs from the flu.

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